April 16, 2014
It’s almost time to push ahead on immigration reform.
Last year, Republican leaders indicated they might go forward on immigration policy after the filing deadlines for primary challenges to incumbents have passed. We’re about there. Even very late primaries, like Florida’s in September, close filing in the next two months. So the groundwork for the legislative debate needs to be laid now.
If nothing is done before Labor Day, the specter of the November general election will stymie action. If Congress fails to act this year, presidential primary politics will get in the way of doing something next year. Friends of this or that candidate will frame the issue to help or hurt one or another contender. And so it goes. Now is the time to do the deed.
One single word holds Republicans back from acting responsibly to deal with the problem. That word is “amnesty.” Timid Republicans so fear this word they will even act against their own interests and the will of their own people to avoid hearing it yelled from the back of the room.